Hey everyone! So since my last few chapters in man hunt got literally no reviews besides my dear gleek who I truly appreciate I decided I would put it one a hiatus and start this little number I have been concocting for a little while. WARNING THIS WILL NOT BE A HERNST AND I HAVE NO INTENTION OF IT BEING ONE. HANSCEN WILL FALL IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE ELSE. With that being said please don't yell at me for breaking up our favorite couple. If it's any consolation both will end up happy and where they are meant to be. I promise. I already have the second chapter written but if reviews are still missing as much as they have been I might take a break and work on other stuff. Thank you so much and I hope you enjoy my try at third person point of view. Reviews are love.
"Classic. Look how happy the poor fool is." Hellmuth crouched lower to be level with the sleeping boys face. He smiled ruthlessly and whispered softly in a high voice "who you dreaming about pretty boy?" the restless blonde's smile faded softly but his legs still kicked slightly. Melchior observed the entire scene with mild disgust. The boys crowded around the newest victim's cot jeering dumbly at his obviously pleasure filled dream. Damn fool. Those dreams will fade fast. He will learn that it's not safe to have dreams like that in a place like this.
Reinhold was now stooped next to Hellmuth. He traced a careful finger down the new comer's jaw and Melchie rolled his eyes as the boys cackled at the kid's soft moan. This had gone on long enough.
"Come on Blondie who is making you moan like that? I bet that she would like me better." The boy in the bed started to mumble and for a second Melchior thought he was going to say a name. He didn't want the kid to have to go through that kind of embarrassment. At least not on his first day. Melchior shoved his way through the crowd.
"Look the philosopher wants in on our little game. First one to make his dream… come to a climax… gets the first punch." Melchie shoved Reinhold to the ground.
"Get out of here. Leave the kid alone." Melchie still hadn't caught a glimpse of the new comer but he didn't really care. He did not take a particular interest in the disgusting boys who slipped in and out of the reformatory walls but he couldn't help taking pity on the poor boy. He had once been in his place. Alone on the first day already singled out to be a victim. When he finally did look at the young man in the bed his throat collapsed.
"Oh my god…" Melchior couldn't form a coherent thought. Reinhold was up on his feet in Melchior's face. He smacked his cheek lightly, sneering out at Melchior.
"Yeah he is a pretty one isn't he? Almost girl pretty. Shouldn't be too hard for a nice strapping lad like you to beat him up. Come on Gabor. You can even have the first shot, shouldn't be too hard while he is asleep." Melchie couldn't drag his eyes from him. They got another one. Another one thrown to the ashes. Tossed to the side for some nonexistent sin. He gazed trying to imagine what crime he could have committed to earn himself such a dismal fate.
"Hanschen… what happened to you?" before he had a chance to rouse the boy the sleeping quarter's door slammed open
"Roll call. Fall in immediately." The red faced warden shouted at the top of his lungs. Most of the boys rolled their eyes and trotted to where their beds were. Hanschen was abandoned and mumbled happily groaning at the hands of some fantastic nocturnal phantasm. Melchie whispered a few curses but knew if he tried to wake him up it would just get them both in trouble.
The teacher immediately stalked up to Hanschen's bed. He waited a few moments and listened with a cruel pleasure to his soft moans and half sentences of joy. He let it go on for a few more moments before going down right next to his ear and shouting.
"Get up now. Before I make you clean every tile with your tooth brush." Hanschen yelped and fell out of bed. He was sorely disoriented and didn't seem to comprehend where he was. After a painful minute of looking around dumbly realization washed over him. He looked as if he might cry for a moment and Melchior held his breath. Thankfully he hardened and got that well remembered hardened expressionless slightly droll gaze. The teacher grabbed him by the shoulder pulling him to his feet. The blanket that had fallen with him slipped to his ankles and conspicuous busts of snickers broke out amongst the boys. Melchior winced painfully. The thin cloth pajama shorts were not very forgiving after a dream of Hanschen's nature.
An almost imperceptible blush crept onto Hanschen's still hardened face. The teacher glanced down and grimaced in disgust with the mildest hint of amusement.
"You are disgusting. You piece of filth. Are you proud of yourself? Are you proud of those disgustingly filthy sinner dreams that you will burn in hell for?" Hanschen didn't flinch but his face grew redder. "What was their name?" Melchior's brow furrowed. This was new. The damnation lecture was ingrained into most of the boys' heads but he had never asked for names before. Hanschen for the first time looked at the floor. He whispered something inaudible to everyone including the teacher. A sharp smack made everyone jump.
"I can't hear you boy. Speak up." Hanschen carefully brought a hand to his now bright red cheek. He hardened his face even more and glared into the warden's eyes.
"I can't remember since I was so rudely wakened." Everyone held their breath. You don't talk to the warden. The silence in the room dragged out a universal fear in all of the boys as they watched the warden lean in and whisper something in Hanschen's ear. All the blood drained from Hanschen's face and he looked as if he might be sick. The warden's smile edged on the border of sinister.
"Now let's try this again. Who was the dream about?" Hanschen's jaw visibly clenched.
"I . Don't . Remember ." The warden's hand swung back and landed a crushing blow sending Hanschen toppling to the floor. He landed face down at Melchior's feet. In a harsh whisper Melchie did his best to help him.
"Don't cry. What ever you do Hanschen don't cry. They will eat you alive if you do." With out a word Hanschen wiped at his face but instead of tears a bit of blood came back on his hands. He glanced up at Melchior recognition dawning on his face. He wiped again at his lightly bleeding nose and got back to his feet with out a word.
Melchior was silently impressed. Generally the boys cried the first time they were hit. And for Hanschen who had rarely even felt the teachers switch it was an even greater accomplishment. Melchior was broken from his revere with the warden spitting at Hanschen's feet.
"You are dirt. You are cleaning the whole dormitory while the other's eat breakfast." Hanschen simply nodded and turned his back setting to work by making his bed. The warden shoved him forward sending him face down into the bed. Hanschen brushed himself off and got back to work. The warden humphed and turned finishing roll call then leading the boys single file out to the cafeteria. Melchior hung behind hoping nobody would notice. They didn't. Food was always a good distraction and a good chance to slip away. Hanschen still had his back to Melchior and he fixed his bed with almost machine like precision. Timidly Melchior placed a hand on Hanschen's shoulder. The boy's entire body tensed and he froze his hands hovering with a sheet. As gently as he could Melchior turned Hanschen to face him. There were hot tear streaks trailing down Hanschen's cheeks and the small trickle of blood mixed with his tears at his chin and dripped off onto his white sheets.
He glared down at the floor in shame. Melchior walked away quickly returning with a scrap of old uniform he had ripped off a boy in a fight a few days ago. He handed it to Hanschen who stared at it dumbly. Melchior sighed and took it back quickly but gently wiping Hanschen's face clean. He wanted to sit him down but he knew that if all the beds were not made they would both be in for a thrashing. Hanschen had not moved the entire time but had nearly bored a hole in the floor with his gaze. Melchior couldn't think of a single thing to say. There was nothing to say that would make the situation better.
Instead of filling the room with awkward words of comfort Melchior set quickly to work helping him with the beds. His eyes flickered up curiously and he watched with mild interest as Melchior got through two beds. He finally turned his back finished his own bed and got to work on the ten other beds still in a jumbled wallow of sheets and pillow cases.
After fifteen minutes of silent work with only the sound of sheets and blankets being tugged to add eloquence to the nonexistent conversation between the two, they finished ever bed. With a quiet sigh Melchior sat gingerly on his won bed and patted the seat next to him. Hanschen glared silently with distaste at the invitation. Melchior almost laughed. He was still the same old Hanschen. Stubborn as hell. Very gently Melchior stood up took the boy by the shoulders and sat him down.
"We are talking. I did not just make half the reformatory beds to get the cold shoulder from you." Hanschen looked away and did his best not to make eye contact. Melchior waited patiently for Hanschen to speak and it paid off.
"I don't want to talk to you." Melchior laughed. Hanschen's voice had been a very unconvincing whisper. "I don't need a friend. I don't plan on being here very long." Melchior's smile faded quickly. He sternly made Hanschen look at him and in as firm a voice as he could manage he tried to instill some knowledge in his stubborn thick skulled head.
"First of all you need as many friends as you can get here. I wish I had someone I knew when I first came here. Second of all you can believe what ever you want and scheme all you want to get out but it won't happen… I know it won't. I was out a total of five days before they caught me sobbing in that cemetery and shipped me back." For the first time Hanschen met his eyes. With a very quiet determination Hanschen whispered back.
"I will get out. And I will stay out. I won't make the same mistakes you made." Melchie bit back a sharp reply knowing if anything Hanschen was in denial. Very gently he smiled back.
"Alright Hanschen. Ok. Just for now though, you need a friend. Someone to show you the ropes and make sure you don't get murdered. I know my way around this place. I can help you."
"I don't want your help. I don't need your help Gabor." Hanschen shook his head and a small drop of blood fell onto his hand. He glazed at it and sighed. "Fine. But… this does not mean we are friends." Melchior smiled knowing that that was the best he was going to get for now. He decided to change the subject.
"So what did you do to get in here?" Hanschen's face grew red then it quickly faded. He glanced across the room his eyes seeing something that wasn't there.
"I killed someone." He said it matter of factly making Melchior wonder if he was being honest.
"What?" Hanschen glanced confused at Melchior and Melchior's suspicions were confirmed.
"Who did you kill?" he inquired laughingly. Hanschen looked away again.
"You don't know him." Again Melchior laughed. Hanschen might be a soulless automaton but he was not a killer. He didn't have it in him.
"Sure I don't know him. Just like I don't know the real reason as to why you ended up in this hell hole." Hanschen glanced at Melchior biting his lip tentatively weighing the choices at hand. Gabor was sadly not very stupid or easily fooled.
"I got caught doing something with someone that I shouldn't have been doing." Melchior frowned. He couldn't have been vaguer had he tried. Very gently Melchior tried to dig a little deeper.
"And is he here too?" Hanschen silently shook his head and gripped the edge of the bed tighter. "Alright and why is that?" Hanschen's voice caught in his throat.
"Because I told them it was my fault. It was my fault." This took Melchior by surprise. Hanschen Rilow sacrificing himself for another? It almost sounded noble.
"And where is he now?" tears welled in Hanschen's eyes but he quickly banished them by digging his teeth harder into his lip.
"I … I don't know." Melchior could tell it was a sensitive subject and shied away from pressing about the boy but Hanschen began talking with out encouragement. Despite his talking Melchior could tell it was not directed at him. Hanschen's blue eyes once again flickered outwards searching frantically for something that would not show itself. "he … has to be so scared…. And sad. I was so stupid. I couldn't listen to him for two damn seconds. He knew they were coming. And now… I am not there and I don't know where the hell he is or what they did to him… and… and I will probably never see him again."
Melchior froze. His ranting sounded so similar to what he wrote in his diary on his first day. He had felt terrible about Wendla. Had he listened to her when she had tried to discourage him... he hadn't known what had happened to her either. If Melchior hadn't known better he would say Hanschen was actually feeling guilt… and love. Melchior was about to press further when the boys filed back into the room loud and rambunctious having had their energy restored by the slop in the cafeteria. As quickly and as gently as he could he shoved Hanschen off his bed. For a moment Hanschen was surprised and glared up at him. But slowly he realized the cause for the rude behavior. They couldn't be seen together. If the others saw they were friends the teasing would never end and it would make both of them targets for today's beatings. Hanschen was already a blazing red flag.
As quickly as he could Hanschen scrambled to his bed and stood at attention mimicking the other boys' actions. He held his chin up as the warden inspected every bed for the smallest of flaws. He couldn't find any. Quietly Hanschen smiled and Melchior couldn't help celebrate silently with Hanschen's pride. Hanschen was sensitive but he hid it well enough. Hopefully he would be able to survive in a place that could rip the joy out of any child and hold a magnifying glass to their worst memories. And from the way Hanschen spoke before he had a lot of bad memories to be magnified.